JAMESTOWN – Illegal dumping of garbage is an increasing problem within the City of Jamestown, with local leaders pushing for action to combat the issue.
Department of Development Director Crystal Surdyk says rising trash and debris are plaguing city streets.
“We’ve got our plummet and blight activities, so our strategic anti-blight initiatives like our Hands on Neighborhoods program is funded through this,“ explained Surdyk. “We also use this for some different cleanups that we have to do around town. You may have seen that there’s been an awful lot of dumping in different places, so that helps us to take care of some of that.”
For those caught illegally dumping, fines can range into the thousands of dollars, a large price to pay compared to the more cost effective ways to get rid of unwanted trash.
“Other than you don’t have the cash to pay for the Transfer Station, which if you get caught, it’s going to be a heck of a lot more than the $20 dollars to take a load to the Transfer Station or landfill,“explained Surdyk.
There are more options that people can use to get rid of waste, including a wide array of municipal programs.
“We’ll actually be using this to offer the community a couple of amnesty days for some large items that maybe they can’t throw out with their regular garbage pickup, and we’ll do electronics as well,” stated Surdyk.
For those who don’t know what to do with their items, Surdyk urges them to seek out help.
“Take some pride in your community, and take some pride in where you live, and have some respect for yourself and for your neighbors and your family members and all the people that live and work here,“ says Surdyk. “If you don’t know what to do with it call us and we’ll try to give you some direction or some assistance.”
In the end, officials say simply cleaning up after yourself is a good start.
“Don’t dump it behind somebody’s house or down a hill, or on the side of the road. It takes us to make all of that garbage, but it takes us to take responsibility and clean up,” explained Surdyk
Those who witness illegal dumping are asked to contact the Jamestown Police Department at (716) 483-7537. In the past two months many have been charged for the act, including a trio that disposed of a mattress on a city street, and a duo that disposed of two tires and a rug in the same location.